PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – In today’s Internet age, libraries are often forced to make cuts in hours and resources.
However, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh is doing just the opposite thanks to some extra funds.
The library will be extending operating hours at many of its neighborhood branches.
“I think it’s a great idea, especially for me if they open it earlier in the morning,” Dolores Blumstein said.
“I think it’s a very good idea, so more people could make more use of it. Sometimes it’s a little difficult to get here before they close,” Bradley Hunter said.
Library leaders decided to increase hours because of a $900,000 budget adjustment.
The extra money comes from a real estate tax that was approved by city voters in November of 2011.
“People made a commitment to the library when they voted for that tax. We are making a commitment back out to them, where they live, work, play and belong,” President and Director Mary Frances Cooper said.
The new hours will mostly be later in the evenings and on weekends.
The plan is to institute them during National Library Week, which begins on April 14.
“We know that families need to come after school and our programming has really been accelerating. People want to come as a family and participate in library activities,” Cooper said.
In addition to extending the hours at a lot of libraries, this money will also go towards purchasing new technology- things like laptops and iPads.
“That’s really important for those neighborhoods where kids are doing homework or people are looking for jobs and that kind of thing,” Cooper said.
Services to preschoolers will be beefed up and library staff will be entering classrooms to read to young students.
“We’re thrilled that we are able to really do some things for this community,” Cooper said.
The specific expanded hours will be announced to the community in the coming weeks.